In November, we asked parents to help us with our Big Collection by donating items such as warm clothing, unopened food tins and other dried food, hygiene items such as nappies and female sanitary products.
We would like to thank everyone who donated so generously and help us to support so many families in need across Leicestershire💛
Here is the link to our feature on BBC East Midlands today: https://fb.watch/2jcIbOlNMd/
“To grow up healthy, children need to sit less and play more.”
Children under five must spend less time sitting watching screens, or restrained in prams and seats, get better quality sleep and have more time for active play if they are to grow up healthy” – World Health Organization (WHO).
Screen time is a sensitive subject at the best of times for most families. However, now in a world of virtual birthday parties, and Zoom classes and with both parents and children spending a lot more of their time at home, it’s becoming increasingly more difficult to know when and how to put limits and restrictions on your child’s screen time.
There are many benefits to reduced screen time including “improving physical activity, reducing sedentary time and ensuring quality sleep in young children which will improve their physical, mental health and wellbeing, and help prevent childhood obesity and associated diseases later in life,” says Dr Fiona Bull, programme manager for surveillance and population-based prevention of noncommunicable diseases, at WHO.
At St. George’s, we understand that it’s often difficult to limit screen time at home, that’s why at nursery, we plan a range of activities that don’t involve screens! We encourage children to play and learn outside in our beautiful large gardens, we encourage yoga, music, singing and dancing, we read and listen to stories from our teachers and peers and we do lots of sensory play including activities with water, play dough and sand. For more activities, please see http://stgeorgesnursery.com/age-group/.
The wide range of activities we do at St. George’s Nursery helps to keep the children active, fit and healthy, as well as to boost their imagination, creativity and enhance their motor and social skills.
Here are a few things you can do at home too…
Start by recognising that with so much more happening online nowadays, some screen time is inevitable. However, there are techniques you can use to limit this:
“When we tell kids not to do something, we almost always need to tell them what to be doing instead,” says Stephanie Lee, PsyD, a clinical psychologist at the Child Mind Institute.
Develop a non-screen activity menu with your children that includes their various other favourite activities, such as cooking and baking, arts & crafts or even teaching pets new tricks. This will help when they are feeling fed up or bored, they have a variety at options ready to go.
Your children may try to reject your new system and act grumpy for the first couple of days. Children often try their luck with new restrictions and try to gauge how firm they really are. If you keep with the plan, rejection and push back are likely to disappear and your children will become accustomed to their new routines.
This definitely won’t be an easy one but it’s important to lead by example. Children are likely to replicate behaviours such as putting your screens away at certain times of time every day. Not only will this help your children decrease the time they spend on their screens, but could also help you control the amount of time you spend doing the same and could give you more valuable and mindful time with your children.
Lockdown 2.0 is here… Does that mean you are back to working from home with the children around? Crying babies? Toddlers singing and dancing? Paperwork go missing? Zoom meetings with your boss whilst your children are doing a fashion show in the background? Yep you’re not the only ones!!
Check out some of the pictures below of some of the hilarious work from home situations some parents found themselves in!
“Being a mother comes with a lot of things; responsibilities, constant learning but most of all emotions. Every day we go through a whirlwind of emotions with our little people. From feeling loved up to moments of frustration due to exhaustion. All these feelings are valid and normal. We can’t always be super happy and it can be difficult to constantly know what to do and what is right.
Guilt. This is a feeling that reoccurs on a daily basis for me. When I was pregnant, I felt guilty because I felt rubbish from the constant sickness and nausea when I had hoped so hard that I would become pregnant. Guilt because I didn’t attend any pre-natal exercise classes to bond with my baby because I was managing a service alone and was left so tired that at the end of a working day, all I wanted to do was sleep. Guilt, because I didn’t go out to make friends with other pregnant women because I wanted to organise myself to start my own business.
After little man arrived, this feeling continued. Guilt that I felt overwhelmed with the 10 hours plus of cluster feeding every day. Guilt that I wasn’t producing enough milk for my baby which was why he was constantly feeding. Guilt that I wasn’t looking forward to breastfeeding because it was painful with sitting as my coccyx had moved during birth. Guilt that I didn’t get out in the early months because I was constantly feeding and the only position I could do it in comfortably was laying down. So on and so on.
It’s hard to come to terms with the reasons behind feeling guilty, and there will always be something that affects us. My recent feeling of guilt has come from the idea of returning to work.
I always knew I wanted to go back to work because I love what I do. Helping others achieve positive experiences gives me a sense of achievement and being. I am passionate about what I do and I love to see the difference I bring to other mothers and their relationships with their babies. This being said, I love seeing my son grow and develop and feel so fortunate to have had spent the last 13 months with him. Unfortunately, however, due to change in circumstance, I have had to re- evaluate my work/ home balance. Before going off on maternity I had planned to go back to work 3 days a week, spend 2 days with my son at home, manage my business 1 day and to spent 1 day as family.
Life had different plans for me and in actual fact I now have to work full time. I sat deliberating with my husband on what was best for us and what was best for me. I knew if I was going back to work, it would have to be to a job I loved and with the niche that I work in, that wouldn’t be easy. Work have offered me some flexibility but I still have to put in the 37.5 hours. I still want to continue supporting women with positive birth experiences and teaching hypnobirthing so it all came down to weighing the importance of each aspect of my life.
I have taken the role and will continue my business too. This has built so much guilt as I know I will only spend 1 hour an evening with my son and will miss 1 weekend a month with him, but what I also know it that this is an opportunity to grow, learn and make the most of the time we have together. I’ll pre plan the night before so I can enjoy that hour with him, playing and bonding. The 3 weekends a month I have with him will be for us. We will make the most of doing things together and enjoying every moment I have with him. I have left the feeling of guilt for holding my son whilst he naps and co- sleeps at night because that is my quality time with him. If things don’t work out at work and it means I have to give it up, we will deal with that at another time. But for now, I acknowledge I will miss some time with my son, but what I will do is make the most of the time I do have with him.
It’s not easy being a parent, not knowing if you are making the right decisions for you and your baby. Regardless of whether you choose to be a stay- at- home mum or a working mum, you have made that decision with good reason. Remember in each case though- make the most of the time with your little person. The house can wait, other people can wait. Do what is right for you and enjoy the precious moments you have together.”
Mental health problems affect roughly 1 in 10 children and young people. The most common mental health problems seen in children are anxiety, ADHD, conduct disorders or learning disabilities.
Alarmingly, 70% of children and young people who experience mental health problems have no had appropriate interventions at the right age.
The emotional well-being of children and young people is just as important as their physical health. Most children can start to show signs of mental health difficulties from a young age but often times these are misdiagnosed or ignored.
Because young people process information, events and emotions differently, nurturing children’s health is influential on their mental health as adults.
Teaching children and young people healthy coping mechanisms, how to regulate strong emotions, how to create a safe space which is welcome to emotional and physical expression are all ways we can try to promote good mental health in children.
The start of good mental health in children leads to the development of well-round and resilient adults. Additionally promoting good mental health helps lead children into dealing with daily struggles and adversities much better in adulthood and helps them grow into strong self-confident individuals.
Head over to the http://www.theminddoc.co.uk/ for more on mental health.